November 19, 2013
It has never happened before in any of the preceding climate conferences!
Delegates take to hunger strike! Demonstrations have become more vociferous: against Polish coal-fired power plants, Australia scaling back climate targets to ridiculous five per cent reductions of C02 and Japanese further rise of C02 emissions!
Finally, Warsaw has shown the beginning of an awakening!
Committed citizens from all parts of the world have dared to stand up and protest against the ineffectiveness of the UN climate process. They no longer tolerate a “business as usual attitude” of the 20 000 (!) delegates. They are furious at the Australian government daring not to send the cabinet minister in charge of energy and climate policy to the second part of the conference when ministers are to discuss political conclusions.
The coincidence of the catastrophic Hayian typhoon on the Philippines and the Warsaw Conference has been fortunate! Thanks to it millions of people across the planet begin to realise that “natural” catastrophes like typhoons, floods or droughts are linked to increasing volumes of fossil energies burnt by Humanity.
However positive this awakening, human beings keep suffering from schizophrenia. With the left half of our brains we continue rejoicing at rising sales of aircraft or cars, both of which responsible for polluting mega-cities and the atmosphere, and with the right half of we regret this happening.
Most probably we need to revise our way of life, scale down our material needs, curtail consuming too many futile products and learn enjoying a happy life without consuming fossil fuels.
But this is most unlikely to happen. It is against our nature. Human beings must be forced to adopt radically different life styles and return to the lower comfort standards. The necessary changes may take longer than what Nature requires us to do. Future generations will have to pay the price and blame their forefathers for the fatal errors they have committed. Young people, those who will still be around towards the end of the century, have to take to the streets!
Eberhard Rhein, Brussels, 20/11/2013